For the first time this season, the Brewers needed extra innings in a game. They made sure it would go their way.
Early on, it was looking like another long day for the Brewers offense. After two scoreless innings to start the game, the Braves struck first and struck hard in the third. Austin Riley hit a three-run home run off Corbin Burnes to put the Braves ahead 3-0. Marcell Ozuna made it back-to-back home runs with a solo shot after that, and the Braves had an early 4-0 lead.
The Brewers responded in the bottom of the fourth. Luis Urias led off the inning with a walk, then was out on a fielder’s choice and replaced by Christian Yelich at first. Hunter Renfroe then singled to move Yelich to third, and Tyrone Taylor followed that with a single to score Yelich. Rowdy Tellez then added a third straight single to score Renfroe, and the Brewers had cut the deficit to 4-2. Two strikeouts by Mike Brosseau and Keston Hiura ended the inning, though.
The Brewers would tack on another run in the sixth. Tyrone Taylor had a one-out single, and Mike Brosseau brought him in with a two-out double. That closed the lead to 4-3.
This wasn’t a good day for Corbin Burnes on the mound. In addition to those four runs allowed, he also allowed seven hits in his start. He did strike out five and not walk a batter, but it was far from his usual strong starts. However, Braves ace Max Fried wasn’t much better. Fried allowed three runs on seven hits and two walks. He also added on six strikeouts.
Meanwhile, the Brewers bullpen helped keep the Braves in check. Trevor Gott, Luis Perdomo and Devin Williams combined to allow no runs in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings, respectively. That kept it a one-run game and gave the Brewers a chance to rally.
After Devin Williams struck out the side in the ninth, the Brewers faced Kenley Jansen needing at least one run. Jace Peterson walked to lead off the inning, and then stole second base to get in scoring position. With two outs, Kolten Wong came up as the Brewers last chance. On a full count, he sent a triple down the right field line to score Peterson and tie the game at 4-4. Luis Urias flew out to end the inning and the Brewers went to extra innings for the first time this season.
With extra innings here, the Braves began the 10th with Ronald Acuna Jr. on second. Hoby Milner came in for the tenth, as Josh Hader was unavailable for the late innings. He walked Matt Olson to start the inning, then Austin Riley grounded into what should have been a double play. However, Kolten Wong’s throw was high and bounced out of Keston Hiura’s glove, which was enough for Acuna Jr. to score. Milner finished the inning with no other issues, but the Brewers were down 5-4.
The Brewers came right back in the bottom of the 10th, starting with Urias at second. Christian Yelich singled to move Urias to third, and Hunter Renfroe brought him in with a sacrifice fly. Yelich moved into scoring position with a stolen base, and that prompted the Braves to intentionally walk Rowdy Tellez with two outs. They got Jace Peterson to fly out to end the inning, and the game went into the 11th tied at 5-5.
Trevor Kelley made his Brewers debut in the top of the 11th inning. It didn’t start well for him, as Travis d’Arnaud hit his first pitch to right, scoring Ozzie Albies from second. The Braves had the lead back at 6-5. Kelley got out of the inning with no further damage, but the Brewers were behind again.
With at least one run needed in the bottom of the 11th, Keston Hiura led off the inning with Jace Peterson at second base. This time, Hiura would make sure that the Brewers would not have to rally again. He hit a monster home run to the batter’s eye in center, ending the game and sending the Brewers home with a 7-6 win.
One question that was on many people’s minds after the game was why Josh Hader was not available. Manager Craig Counsell provided an update in his post-game interviews, saying that Hader left the ballpark early due to a family issue.
The offense was better today, with every starter recording a hit except for Victor Caratini (who did reach base once on a walk). The Brewers had 10 hits and five walks altogether, and went 5-for-15 with runners in scoring position.
The Brewers have a day off on Thursday before they start a three-game series against the Nationals on Friday. Eric Lauer will start the series for the Brewers, while the Nationals have not announced their starter yet. First pitch is set for 7:10 PM.